Over the past few weeks, I’ve read some articles on ways to build the immune system. All the points delivered were excellent, but something is missing, and obviously, it’s an important one.
This is a period when many more will be broke, a period when the economy of most countries starts crashing down. It’s sad to say that whatever step is available at this point must be highly inexpensive.
But does this mean it is not doable? That’s a No. There are several things you can still do to boost your immune system at this time. First, let’s talk about why you need to build the immune system.
Why Build the Immune System?
The human body is highly susceptible to diseases, viruses, and infections that fly around us every now and then. The work of the immune system is to help you fight off microorganisms that are powerful enough to wreak havoc on your health.
And when they fail to handle these microorganisms, that is when you start to feel sick or, in most cases, death is recorded.
In light of the recent Covid-19, many more are interested in building their immune system, as this is one of the ways to survive the virus. Along with building your immune system, take active steps to protect yourself from coming in contact with those infected with the virus.
How to Build the Immune System
While it is easier said than done, building the immune system is more detailed than eating a balanced diet. Building a while system or improving a whole system is not an easy task, as such.
There is a lot of balance and harmony required for a successful immune system building. So let’s explore the available options;
Eat a Healthy Diet
You can never underestimate the benefits of a healthy diet. For building your immune system, you should go for plant-based food like vegetables, fruits, herbs, and spices. These will help your immune system work better and help it function well. Plant-based food is known to come with antimicrobial and antiviral properties. They are also beneficial for building the immune system.
Spices like thyme, oregano, cinnamon, cumin, clove, amongst others, contain the essential antimicrobial and antiviral properties that help prevent the growth of bacteria that spoil foods.
In our plant-based foods are essential elements like zinc, selenium, copper, folate, iron, and other essential Vitamins like Vit A, C, E, B6, and B12. That’s all your immune system needs to work efficiently. Vit C, for example, when deficient, has the likelihood to increase how susceptible a person is to infection. The human body does not produce the needed water-soluble vitamins of their own. As such, you need to get these through the food you are eating.
Vitamin C can be found like citrus fruit, kiwis, or other cruciferous vegetables. It’s been said that in a half cup of red pepper, you get 95 milligrams or 106% of the daily requirement of Vitamin C.
Another important thing needed for the immune system’s health is protein. Amino acids present in protein are functional for building and maintaining the cells of the immune system. When you skim these essential macronutrients, your ability to fight infections is greatly reduced.
What are your options?
So, in your next food, try as much as possible to add more plant and plant-based foods. Some of the available options include adding veggies and fruits in your soup, Smoothies, salad, and stew. Alternatively, you may eat them as snacks. Some of the options include:
- Ball pepper
- Citrus fruits (oranges, tangerine, grapefruits, etc.)
You should also explore proteins and zinc from sources like:
- Lean meat
When the human body is subjected to stress for long, this may lead to a chronically elevated level of the steroid hormone cortisol. Our bodies strongly rely on hormones like cortisol when under stress. The cortisol prevents the human body from responding before stressful events come to an end. If the cortisol level is always high, this blocks the immune system from starting its activities of protecting the body against potential threats like viruses and bacteria.
How do you handle stress, methods differ, but you can read this for more information?
Sleep as much as possible
When you sleep, your body continually heals itself and regenerates. This is one reason why you should have enough hours of sleep regularly.
When sleeping, the human body produces and distributes immune cells like cytokine (a protein that fights or promotes inflammation), T cells (a white blood cell that regulates the immune system), and interleukin12 (a pro-inflammatory)
With a lack of sufficient sleep, the immune system will start to malfunction, and this can make defending your system harder than expected. That’s why most fall sick after subjecting themselves to prolonged stress.
How long should you sleep? Long into this article to have detailed information on how long you should sleep and the benefits.
When you deprive yourself of sleep, the cortisol level rises, and this can be very bad for the immune system. They keep wearing down gradually, and that makes fighting against illness impossible.
Exercise Regularly (Outdoors, When Possible)
If you will drastically reduce your chances of falling sick, exercise is one thing you must focus on. It prevents chronic health conditions like obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. In fact, it can help you fight viral and bacterial infections according to the latest research.
The ability of your body to release endorphins improves when you have the right dose and amount of exercise. Since the effect of stress is negative, exercise is the direct opposite that helps us stay healthy.
You don’t need to go for long, intense exercise, simple things like walking, jogging, skipping, running, and other smaller workouts are very beneficial.
Reduce intake of alcohol
Like you, me, and many others around the world, we love alcoholic beverages. Common sense advises that you take a moderate amount of alcohol. Inspired writings advice taking moderate amounts. Scientists advise you to take moderate amounts. And your immune system is not saying you shouldn’t take at all, but reduce how much you consume.
The truth is, many who drink alcoholic beverages do it to get high, they really don’t know what it does, its function, or why they should take it.
I am not saying you don’t, but for the sake of your immune system, cut down on your rate of consumption, that will not kill you.
The ability of your body to fight germ reduces drastically with excess alcohol as your body starts focusing on detoxifying the system rather than defending your system against infection and sickness.
The more you drink, the more susceptible you are to conditions like pneumonia, acute respiratory syndrome, alcoholic liver disease, some types of cancer, and many others I don’t and can’t mention.
If you don’t drink, please don’t start now. And if you do before now, limit it to at least a drink per day for women and 2 per day for men. That’s the NIH recommendation.
It’s best I tell you now, cigarettes and other combinations you smoke will only make you high, and kill your immune system. Anything called toxin is harmful and can compromise your system.
When you smoke, the chemicals released, which include carbon monoxide, nicotine, nitrogen-oxide, cadmium, and even the ones that are still unknown. All these interfere with the growth and function of the immune cells like cytokines, T cells, and B cells.
Bacterial and viral infections become worse when you smoke, especially with those that affect the lungs, e.g., Pneumonia, flu, tuberculosis, and the ravaging Covid-19 or Coronavirus. It also causes post-surgical infections, rheumatoid arthritis, and many other infections.
“Don’t smoke and avoid second-hand smoke whenever possible.
Try and avoid this habit. There is no other time than for you to do it now.
Make use of herbs and supplements
Your Immunity can be improved with the use of herbs and supplements. There are locally made ones that are powerful enough to help improve your Immunity.
Well, you need to be sure that the preparation process is pure and clean. You also need to be sure that the preparation method is beneficial, and the herbs used will benefit you greatly.
Sometimes you leave the best for the last. You should never underestimate the benefit of drinking enough water each day. Drink water as much as possible, as this will also affect your health positively. That’s one way to effectively wash away the harmful toxins in your body. The listed tips above are there to help you build your immune system until nothing; not even the ravaging coronavirus can affect you. Make sure you keep a healthy lifestyle and that you avoid things that can have negative effects on your health.
Good health to you. We would appreciate it if you drop a word or two in the comment section.